My husband, Kevin, and I launched the ‘Main Street School of Music’ in 2003. We have an interest in music as Kevin has a background playing guitar in the popular local band “Hollyfaith”. He had achieved a moderate success with his band, scoring a major label record deal with Sony/Epic and touring internationally. I also have quite a bit of fun playing guitar in a couple of local Atlanta bands.
In January 2011 I added art classes to the mix and started ‘Main Street School of the Arts’ after a long career as a graphic designer. I have had a background in fine arts throughout my life. As a child I was drawing obsessively before I could walk or talk. My mother made sure that I had various papers, paints, charcoals, and pastels at my disposal and I soaked it up. So, it was no surprise that I studied fine art and graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a B.F.A. in graphic design. I have always loved being a graphic designer but never felt great about working solely for the sake of a corporation’s bottom line. I felt the need to do something positive with my livelihood, something that makes a difference in the world, so I opened the art school.
I believe that early creative learning experiences are important. Using one’s imaginative capabilities through art and music during the developmental years is important for intellectual growth. Creative and divergent thinking capacities are refined during this critical phase. I think it is important to foster creativity and critical thinking and teach life-long learning skills.
Also, gaining skills in art or music can have a real impact on children’s personal lives that goes beyond an arts role. Being good at something gives children a sense of self confidence that is carried with them throughout the rest of their lives. I believe artists and musicians never get away from the ‘homework of the eye and the mind’. We dream art both at night and in our daydreams. I try to find ways to inculcate my students with artistic ways of seeing and thinking about all of life.
Untitled, 18″ x 24″ Charcoal and chalk (created at age 17)
Facade, 18″ x 24″ Pencil drawing (the college years)
Chit Chat, 18″ x 24″ Lithograph (the college years)
Works from my teen sketchbook (created at age 14). I always tell my students to keep their old sketch books. It’s so much fun to see them later and to check your progress.